Saturday, September 15, 2007

Rudy shoots...

Rudy scores.

via Hugh Hewitt

Greenspan bashes Bush in his new book.

And I couldn't agree with him more.

When Winning Is A Defeat.

The Weekly Standard has an excellent piece on how basically winning in Iraq is a defeat for the Democrats. When the Democrats have put so much political energy in insisting that we have a failed policy and a failed war, they lose big time with any sort of victory for America over there. A true and sad state of affairs.

Congressmen and women on both sides of the aisle express admiration for Petraeus's leadership. I think they knew it would do no good to personally bash what was obviously a great leader. (Except for of course) So they instead engaged in a bit of sidestepping verbal disagreement. Sen.Dick Durbin with his accusing Petraeus of "carefully manipulating the statistics," and Hillary's "willing suspension of disbelief" barb.

As the WS points out, this was the Democrat's worst nightmare. A man who everyone agreed was a man of integrity and leadership, telling us that the surge is working and that Iraq has turned a corner and that we have achieved tangible results in our war on terrorism.

This should have been good news all around, right? But only a defeat is good news for the Democrats. They have bet too much of their political capital on "failure."

The WS asks this very key question: Do leading Democrats want America to win this war?

David Gelernter, the author of this article, says that they do not want us to win, not because they are traitors or don't love this country, but because it would be better if we lost in order to achieve their worldview........"Appeasement, pacifism, globalism: Those are the Big Three principles of the Democratic left."

A bloody war won is a defeat for the principles of pacifism. It's really that simple.

It's important to understand this I think. It isn't that Democrats are un-American, they are not. They just envision an America that is based on the values and ideals of appeasement, pacifism, and globalism. They believe in an American that doesn't fight. A passive peaceful America that sits at the table of communication with all those around the world. Evilness such as Al Quaeda only need to be understood.

Which is a nice thought, but so is a world without sickness or death, but it isn't reality and it never will be. Because there will always be those who choose to bomb, kill, torture, and defeat us. And we cannot be passive in the face of evil. As Beslan and 9-11 showed us, with our enemies there is no happy ending and no negotiation. The bloody and horrific ending is destined to be, no amount of appeasement will do. Their ending of horror and bloodshed will not change, no matter what the circumstances. Only a fierce and deadly force ending their brutality will change the outcome. That is what the Democrats will not accept.

Gelernter makes this important point: .."And those who think that our war in Iraq has nothing to do with the 9/11 murderers, or their friends whose ultimate target is America, are living in Fantasyland."

We are fighting and defeating and killing Al Qaeda in Iraq. That is simply a fact. It was Al Qaeda that flew the planes into the twin towers. It was not Iraq that flew those planes, it was not Saddam Hussein, and it was never ever said that it was. It was always clearly and honestly pointed out that Saddam had the capability to hand terrorists weapons and a safe ground in which to train to kill us. The enemy is in Iraq. No one can argue that. Democrats can stomp their feet and say they weren't there before the war, but where were they? Iran? Pakistan? Egypt? Should we have gone into those countries? A war had to be fought my friends, and it had to be fought anywhere but HERE.

Friday, September 14, 2007

If you missed the President's speech last night...

Here it is.

I missed it. I had a son's football game to go to. I'm reading it now.

This part strikes me as key:

The success of a free Iraq is critical to the security of the United States. A free Iraq will deny al Qaeda a safe haven. A free Iraq will counter the destructive ambitions of Iran. A free Iraq will marginalize extremists, unleash the talent of its people, and be an anchor of stability in the region. A free Iraq will set an example for people across the Middle East. A free Iraq will be our partner in the fight against terror – and that will make us safer here at home.

This has been my main reasons for continued support of the war. I have no doubt in my mind that fighting the terrorists in the Middle East has kept us safe here. No doubt. But beyond that, I feel it's critical to introduce the modern age into the areas of the Middle East that seem lost in time past. Shining the light of knowledge and freedom is never ever a bad thing. It is always a good thing. We have been 2 cultures that know nothing about each other for too long.

Before this war on terror, how many of you knew anything about Islam, much less radical Islam? How many of you knew about Burkas, and the sadistic behavior of Saddam Hussein? And what did they know of us? Even less. Only the propaganda of Saddam run television.

This is but one place to begin a new relationship with the Middle East. One place. In one time. History turns on such a thing.

Complaint filed with the FEC over Petraeus ad.

Uncle Jimbo over at Blackfive has file a formal complaint with the FEC over the General Petraeus ad in the New York Times.

"There may be some loophole that MoveON and the NYT slithered through that allows this, but it sure looks dirty to me. We had a sit down with a lawyer prior to the 2006 election specifically telling us that under no circumstances could we ever discount political or advocacy rates, it was illegal and could destroy the rep of the paper. Well for the NYT their rep is not a problem, but I hope they did break the law. It would front them out as the house organ for the American left and the Democratic party. The Dems don't have to do the heavy sliming, a media/Soros/nutroots coalition will act like swine on their behalf."

No matter how this turns out, it's nice that the message is being sent to the MSM that they aren't going to get away with paritisan tactics anymore. Maybe we can get back to objective reporting (and objective advertising selling).

Related: Rudy is demanding the same rate for ad space. Heh.

Update: Here is Rudy's ad. Allah at HotAir is not impressed. He thinks it's all about Rudy and not about exposing partisanship at the NYT or defending Petraeus. Well..duh. With Rudy, it's always all about Rudy.

Come On. You know you love him.

The Daily Pundit, a Fred supporter, gives credit where credit is due:

via The Corner on National Review Online

ARLINGTON, VA — U.S. Senator John McCain made the following statement today:

Senator Clinton said that believing General Petraeus’ testimony requires a ‘willing suspension of disbelief.’ I think it willingly suspends disbelief to not repudiate an advertisement run by a radical left wing organization that impugns and dishonors the integrity of a man who has served his nation with dedication all of his life. If you’re not tough enough to repudiate a scurrilous, outrageous attack such as that, then I don’t know how you’re tough enough to be President of the United States.

I agree with the Daily Pundit that this emphasizes the weakness of Hillary. I think the only way we will win this is if we make sure people understand that she is incapable of being the Commander in Chief during a time of war. Because, make no mistake about it, even if she withdrew our troops, we would still be at war.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Mashup!

All eight Democratic contenders participated in a "mashup" interview for an online candidates' forum sponsored by Yahoo!, Slate Magazine and the Huffington Post including Clinton, Barack Obama, John Edwards, Bill Richardson, Chris Dodd, Joe Biden, and Mike Gravel. As you might imagine, there weren't any hard hitting questions.
I was glad to be able to read it because I can't bear to watch the Democratic debates.

It was pretty much what you would expect. Hillary talks healthcare plan (I can't wait!). She gets indignant at the notion that she is swayed by big time lobbyist money.

All the candidates generally defended Petraeus against the ad. You know they had to be gritting their teeth on that one. Except for Edwards, who didn't even know what the ad said. (riiiight)

In an interesting moment of candor, Mike Gravel said Americans are getting fatter and dumber.

Edwards said he would retreat from the war completely in 9 months. Every American would be legally required to have health care and free college education for everyone! Free cookies too! He says we must all conserve energy in our home and cars. So he's going to keep the air down on about 5000 square feet of his 10,000 square foot mansion (and other homes) and make the limo drivers keep the air on low. (Ok, I made the last part up, and the cookies as well)

Obama said that early childhood education should begin for a "at risk" child when they are born. I am not kidding.
Let's see. At my youngest child's nice suburban school, there is not only free breakfast and lunch for the poor, but "discounted" breakfast and lunch (about $1.50) for anyone. That's right. I see the parents going in the line to get food in the morning. I suppose Obama would have a fully staffed "nursery school" right off the cafeteria. Between that, free pre-school, and after school care, why don't we just go ahead and throw up some cots and call it an orphanage already.
FREE COOKIES for everyone. Except we all know, it's not free. It's just paid for by me and you.

The Greatest Horror.

If you haven't been watching Glenn Beck's series "The Perfect Day" on MSNBC, then you MUST watch the final segment tonight. (7 and 9pm Eastern on CNN) "The Perfect Day" is what papers and tapes that have been found in Iraq and Pakistan, show what a "perfect day" would be to terrorize Americans. What is the perfect day? Remember Beslan? That's it. And there is some unnerving evidence that they are looking at our schools.

I copied a lot of Tuesday night's transcript here, but it's important to read the whole thing. As I listened I felt this deep down fear. God help us if this were to happen.

Glenn Beck has been discussing this with Brad Thor, author of a series of fiction books on terrorism, but his research revealed a reality that is chilling:

THOR: Well, we talked about things. First of all, we based it on this Al-Qaeda model of being like a shark, how they swim big concentric circles. They don't come right in and bite you. They collect Intel, getting closer and closer, tighter and tighter in the circles. But before they attack, before they take the bite, they come up and they bump you. They want to see are you a threat, are you going to put up a fight, or can we get you. And that's what we're seeing across the country with the two Saudi Arabian men. I talked to people in that investigation down in Florida, in the Tampa area, the two Saudi men that boarded that school bus and wouldn't get off and all that kind of stuff where there was a strong feeling among people involved in that investigation that that was a dry run. We see this, we see school buses missing, 17 in Texas. We see thousands of school bus radios missing in the Northwest, the Pacific Northwest. We find, in the course of this investigation, I talked with -- it would blow your mind how many law enforcement departments I talked to that have interrupted active surveillance on schools across the country. The dots are there.

GLENN: So tonight -- first of all let me just tell this story again. In Iraq we found a diskette that had a -- that had downloaded all of the Department of Education security measures, and they're all available online.

THOR: Okay. What was found in an insurgent, an Al-Qaeda affiliated safehouse over in Iraq, they were school blueprints, basically, floor plans for schools across the country. San Diego, California, West Salem, Oregon, Boyertown, Pennsylvania, schools in Texas, Virginia, New Jersey, and this was very, very disconcerting and there was a cover story that was concocted that, hey, this was just some Iraqis who were involved with the Ministry of Education in Iraq and they're looking to rebuild their schools and all that kind of BS.

GLENN: Unbelievable. I mean, who would buy that, that they come to us to look at the architectural plans of schools all around the country, six or eight -- I mean, were these remarkable schools, architecturally speaking, Brad?

THOR: No, no, it wasn't incredible Frank Lloyd Wright but it shows you how desperate the FBI is to get to the -- they are desperate. They are working so hard to prevent this from happening. That's one thing I want your listeners to know is that they do not want this to happen. They are working hard, but at the same time they are trying to prevent people from panicking.

THOR: Exactly. In one of the things that we're seeing here is that they are looking for the softest targets possible, and that means when you're looking at schools in the heartland, you look at how long it takes from a 911 phone call to getting a tactical team, not just patrol officers but a tactical team on site, and in a lot of places that takes a long time, especially if you have a multijurisdictional swat team. So what these terrorists are looking for from the stuff that's been recovered, and tonight on your CNN Headline News program, we're going to have John Giduck on who wrote the book terror at Beslan who wrote the book, the dress rehearsal. Bin Laden has said what we did in Russia, we will visit 100 times worse in America. He's even gotten a religious edict allowing him to kill up to two million American children and what they are looking for is a school where the girls are old enough to rape and the boys are too small to fight back.

GLENN: I want to go back to Pakistan because there was something else that we touched on last night and we didn't play this tape. We were only cleared to play a few seconds of it. I'm going to try to expand that and put it on tomorrow's newsletter so you can see it. There's eight hours of tape that we found in Pakistan in another Al-Qaeda training camp, eight hours of tape where they made a mock American school. The guy, the terrorists came in and they took mock American students, they took one little boy and they shot him in the head immediately and then in English said, "Now follow our directions exactly." It's how to take over an American school. It's eight hours of tape. Only an hour of it has been seen by American law enforcement officials here in America. We've only seen part of it. What else is on this eight, the eight hours? What is this?

THOR: It's kind of the master planning tapes of Al-Qaeda. It is the full library as best as our intelligence and military people know, and what they did was they edited down to a one-hour version to show American law enforcement in particular what they need to be prepared for, and the most chilling thing, there's the drive-up motorcycle assassinations and things like that but the one thing that's resonated throughout the law enforcement community has been the attack on the school where they have the mock role players. They've even got -- you can hear in the background there's almost like a soundtrack of children crying, to add realism to the training of these Al-Qaeda operatives, and they are issuing their commands in English and then what they're doing almost kind of PR media savvy is they take a bunch of them up to the roof and they execute them on the roof, kind of for the television cameras to show how serious they are. And one of the -- if that isn't frightening enough, Glenn, what we've discovered is all of their plans on how to surveil the schools, how to get in the schools, how to hold the schools, the one thing that's missing from all these plans, there is no exit strategy. These people are not planning to leave alive. They want to play this out for the media. They want to absolutely devastate us emotionally, psychologically and also financially with this kind of attack here.

I'm wondering and asking you what you think our Government and our people's reaction would be to such a scenario? Not what you think we should do, but what you think would happen in the aftermath of terrorists killing our children in their schools.

Anti-Americans cont...

I just caught this at BuzzMachine:

I go to the World Trade Center on September 11 to remember. I say that others go to graves to pay tribute. I go to the place that did not become my grave to pay thanks. But it is becoming harder every year. That’s not because of the memories, which do indeed lost their sharpness and volume.

It’s because of the assholes standing outside the PATH station now: the 9/11 nutjobs, the 21st-century Holocaust deniers who exploit the day and its sacred memory to spread their poison and get on TV — and TV happily conspires with them to do that. How some people can be so starved for attention to do this is beyond me.

Click on the link to view some video he took. It's so idiotic. It's easy to make fun of these people. But when I read how this stupidity affects those in NYC who feel what we all should feel, (and most do) which is a profound sadness for all we lost that day, I just get angry at those who don't understand what this day must be about. To pay tribute to those who gave their lives to save others. To pay tribute to those who lost their lives in a senseless insane act.


Above, volunteers clean the Vietnam Memorial that appeared to be vandalized over the weekend. Michelle has all the details and a video that she made of the damage.

Keep reading though, and see how other anti-American "protesters"(criminals) desecrate a mural in San Francisco honoring the heroic flight attendant Betty Ong who died on Flight 11 on Sept. 11th.

I can't tell you how sick this makes me. When I think of family members and how they must feel when they see a memorial to their lost loved one smeared and damaged in such a way, I just want to cry.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007



Farris Hassan's Day Off.

Remember Farris Hassan? He was the 16-year-old Florida boy who made headlines in 2006 when he traveled to Iraq without even telling his own mother.

He came back to establish The Society of Love and Justice. In his first project they collected and sent school supplies to rebuild the educational system in Iraq via Operation Iraqi Children. In his next project he sent student-written letters to American soldiers in Iraq for Christmas.

We were all a bit suspicious of him as I recall, but it seems he is just one of those rare passionate kids that feels a calling to make the world a better place.

Read his essay about going into Iraq in 2005.

It's quite beautiful.

More Michael Yon.

He has a new post up. As usual,it's excellent and I love the pictures. He just gives the reader a feeling of being right there beside him. Go read it.

Here's his e-mail:


Successes are occurring, and accruing, in Iraq. Al Qaeda is still a powerful enemy, but they cannot be happy with their Iraqi franchise this summer.

Readers of my dispatches have gotten first hand reports of the kinds of positive indicators that General David Petraeus described in his progress report.

The atmosphere is changing in Iraq and I've been posting dispatches and videos that illustrate just how profound this change is in some cases.

I was the first to say Iraq was in civil war, and many readers were angry to hear me say it. Well, I'll be the first to say that I predict some sort of milestone for the war in Iraq will occur early in the next year. It's dangerous to predict like this, but something fundamental has changed in Iraq.

There is one important qualifier: this will only happen if General David Petraeus is supported by our elected officials to implement his proposed plan, without meddling from those same elected officials. Oversight and accountability are not the same thing as backseat driving after siphoning out half of the gas tank.

Please read: Hunting Al Qaeda


I've always trusted Michael's reporting. He's just honest, with no agenda. When he reported about the civil war, it was then I knew it was a real problem. It made people mad who only wanted a positive view, but if we are to face this enemy properly, we have to face the hard truths as well.

It's hard out here for a Hip Hop Reverend

This is a video of the Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr., of the D.C.-based Hip Hop Caucus. (Hip Hop Caucus? Do we have a Country Jam Caucus?)

According to the WaPo he "allegedly refused to move back after jumping in front of a line of people waiting to get inside the room. He was charged with disorderly conduct and assault on a police officer, Capitol Police said." He was then taken by DC Fire and Emergency to George Washington Hospital,where he is today.

Even those who defend the Reverend, admit that he says clearly, "I will not be arrested today." Well, guess what? You don't get to decide that. When will people understand that you must obey a police officer even if you disagree with him. There is this notion out there, especially among young people, that if you are "in the right" then you can argue and refuse to do what a police officer says.

The police say he cut in line and they asked him to go back. That is clearly what they are arguing about at the beginning of the tape. Even if that wasn't true, YOU DON'T ARGUE WITH THE POLICE. Especially on Capitol Hill! If you do, then they take you down. Anyone with even a passing knowledge of the show 'COPS' knows this.

We have to have respect for authority in this country. We have to. Maybe Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr didn't cut line. Maybe he was totally in the right, but when a police officer tells you to move...YOU MOVE. Then, you can discuss your problem.

In the video he starts struggling with the officers immediately as he says he won't be arrested today. YOU CANNOT DO THIS.

Now, I don't think the Rev. is a stupid man. I don't think he is unaware that what happened would happen. This seems to me to be contrived. I think he wanted to be arrested. How else could he have gotten into the paper today? I hope he isn't really hurt, but most times in this life, you get what you ask for.

The decline of Rudy.

I hope.

"Days after he officially jumped into the Republican race for the White House, former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson finds himself in a statistical dead heat with Rudy Giuliani, according to a CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll released Tuesday. The former New York mayor garners 28% nationally among registered Republicans, while Thompson is one point behind at 27% -- well within the poll's 5 percentage point margin of error.

Former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani continues to lead the race for the Republican presidential nomination, but he has seen a dramatic erosion in his support, which now stands at its lowest point of the year, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. Giuliani's support dropped from 37% in a July poll to 28% in the latest (national) survey, and his decline from February has been even more sharp. Then, he had the backing of 53% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents and had a better than 2 to 1 advantage over his closest rival.

I've never understood Rudy's lead. We need to nominate a real conservative. Let's get to it.

More Funny.

Click here for larger image. From Grouchy Old Cripple who aptly says:

I like the "leaves a layer of slime on everything it touches". A perfect description of the Clintons.

Uncle Abdul, your squeezable suicide bomber.

This satirical suicide bomber character from the Seamour Sheep comic strip series will soon be available as a designer vinyl figure, produced by Crazy Label.We hope that the release of the Uncle Abdul figure will help to ironize the act of suicide bombing and acts of violence in general. In our humble opinion no subject should be an absolute taboo that is free from any satire, because satire is not only meant to make people laugh, but sometimes also to wake them up and make them think and discuss.The photograph shows the first hand-painted Uncle Abdul toy prototype being saluted by the very rare red-nosed edition of his nephew Marty Mole.

Exactly what are we suppose to "wake up" about? That suicide bombers are insane (I think we got that) and we shouldn't make toys out of them?

via boing boing


NewsBusters has launched a new comedy called "NewsBusters."

Comedy is hard, trust me. This was a good first time out of the gate. "I love cat fights" was my favorite line. Anyway..enjoy!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I'm in the Dixie Chick's movie???

Someone e-mailed and asked if I knew that this site was read by the Dixie Chicks at the beginning of their docu/movie "Shut Up and Sing." I could hardly believe that someone hadn't noticed that before, but I guess my readership isn't exactly running out to rent this DVD. She said that Natalie makes fun of my "sparkle" name.

Anyway, I tried to find the clip of the beginning and I couldn't. I did find this review though:

" The opening scene of Shut Up & Sing perfectly captures the tone and subject matter of the film to follow. In it, Emily Robison is working on a slide guitar line as a child plays amongst guitars, the Chicks and their band casually rehearsing, until someone starts reading heavy-handed criticism and insults from the blog "" It's a clear example of the new reality for the Dixie Chicks, that what was once just about the music is now blended with personal politics, and they can never go back."

(They got the website wrong though. It's Maybe that's why I never heard from their fans.)

I found a mention of me here too! (German?)

Isn't that a riot????

Now, I couldn't' even remember posting about the Dixie Chicks, so I searched my blog and just found this. Where I link their song "I'm not ready to make nice." and I say "Clearly the Dixie Chicks are still ticked off."
That's it. That's all I wrote, and the comments are not flattering, but they aren't over the top rude either.

Too funny.

Update: I think I have this mystery figure out. I bet they were reading this post over at my Houston Chronicle blog. It would seem to make sense to read their hometown papers. And at the top of that blog it says " A blog about politics and issues with with Rightwingsparkle."

I wrote a longer post at that site and even though there are insults, there is a lot of defending the Dixie Chicks too. I think it's a fair piece anyway.

I say Petraeus, you say Betray us....

Did we really think that Petraeus testifying before Congress would change any one's mind?

The left calls the General a traitor and a GOP operative. Nothing the General would have said would have changed their minds or made them happy or even think more about it, unless he had proposed an immediate withdrawal of all troops.

The right was hoping for the best. But not for Bush's sake, but for the sake of establishing a place in the middle east that does not harbor terrorists and is a friend to the U.S. By all accounts the surge seems to be working. It's clear that Iran is just waiting with bated breath for us to leave so they can take control of the region. We cannot let that happen.

But the reasonable left have a right to question how long this will go on. I wonder as well. But when it comes to war, one has to trust those leading it. If we don't, then why have military leaders at all?

The report was certainly not glowing on the situation in Iraq. It had honest assessments of what hasn't worked. And from everything that I have read about Petraeus, on both the left and right in leadership positions, he is an impressive respected leader.

Bush promised that he would let boots on the ground run this war and not Washington. Which is exactly what he is doing. He is adopting Petraeus's recommendations.

Minds haven't changed, but this war is being fought whether we like it or not.

On the plus side, Iraqi's welcome Petraeus approach.

9-11. Some Are Over It.

I was looking through my archives for my 9-11 posts to see what I had written before, but I found this one from April, 2006. What set me off was a Kos diarist. I saw by reading through it, that it so expressed how I feel every year on 9-11, that I would reprint it today. (edited)

Some people are so over it:

"Somebody has to be the first one to say it. I'm over it."

"Yes I want to stop any future attacks, and yes I honor the victims, and all of that. But seriously? "Never forget?" Look, as abominable and shocking as it was, "never forget" is a bit much."

A. Bit. Much.

He's over it. Well, this chick ain't over it. And I will never forget. I will never forget the people of the sky. I will never forget the day that monsters took innocent people and flew them into hell. The only comfort I derive is knowing that the hi-jackers are the only ones who stayed there.

I will never forget the walls of faces they showed in New York City on TV every evening for weeks. The missing loved ones. Sheets of paper with the smiles of those no longer able to. The grief etched into the those wandering around clutching their flyers and their hope, but reality wrapping it's cold wet fingers around their heart.

I will never forget the phone calls from the planes and the towers. The last words of love and the bewilderment, confusion, and terror. All visited upon us. And for what? For some insane version of religion? For a belief in a twisted false God whose face is as black as the hearts of the men who listened to it's voice from hell?

Do you think I could ever forget THAT?

Not only will I never forget, I will make sure my children do not forget. I will show them the movies about 9-11. I will show them the footage and play them the newscasts. I will let them listen to the phone calls. I NEVER want them to forget what happens when we ignore the writing on the wall from monsters intent on killing us. Monsters who hate us for no other reason than who we are.

When I talk to my children about Stalin and Hitler, they will also hear the name Osama. They will know what it means when power and evil decide to eradicate a people. They will know what hate looks like. I want them to recognize it. I want them to memorize it's face. I want them to confront it, fight it, and never let it grow.

Let the ones at Kos forget. Let them "get over it." There are enough of us in this country, thank God, who will never "get over it." Enough to make sure none of us, even those who don't deserve it, ever have to suffer the broken heart of America ever again.

Related: A younger generation doesn't forget.

Update: An album of 9-11 photos. 5,244 of them. Amazing. Click slideshow, sit back and say a long prayer. via The Cotillion

Monday, September 10, 2007

9/11 Truth March and Power to the Peaceful Festival

In San Francisco, naturally. Zombie has many more pics in all it's weirdness, but I couldn't resist this Ron Paul supporter.
via LGF

Can you say crazy?

Keith Olbermann (msnbc), one of the left's favorite commentators, had this to say in Playboy:

Al Qaeda really hurt us, but not as much as Rupert Murdoch has hurt us, particularly in the case of Fox News. Fox News is worse than Al Qaeda — worse for our society. It’s as dangerous as the Ku Klux Klan ever was.

- Keith Olbermann in the October 2007 issue of Playboy

via Mediabistro

9-11 "Truthers" interrupt Geraldo.

He handles it pretty well. (scroll down for video)

h/t Jandrew

Just a thought on the Petraeus report.

There will be the usual disagreement with the Democrats on this report. It is a report they requested and now are calling the "Bush Report" to discredit it, but here is how the Washington Post describes it in brief:

The top U.S. commander in Iraq told Congress today that the military objectives of the Bush administration's troop increase strategy in Iraq "are in large measure being met," and he forecast a reduction of U.S. forces "to pre-surge levels" without jeopardizing gains in the months ahead.

Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't this what the Democrats want? A reduction of U.S. forces? Does this good news not count to them because of the positive report of our surge working? Shouldn't all Americans be happy that it worked and that we can begin to bring our boys home? It just seems to me that everyone wins here. Unless one doesn't really care about winning, but about making sure Bush and our military never look right.

On a side note, do the protesters (code Pink it looks like) have any idea how ridiculous they look screaming on TV? Good grief, even Democrat House Armed Services Chairman Ike Skelton called them a**holes when he thought the mike was off. Do they honestly think this sway anyone to their side?

McCain and Lieberman on the Petraeus report.

Listening to Petraeus

The president had the courage to change course on Iraq. Does Congress?

Here are some excerpts:

Consider how the situation has changed. A year ago, al Qaeda in Iraq controlled large swaths of the country's territory. Today it is being driven out of its former strongholds in Anbar and Diyala provinces by the surge in U.S. forces and those of our Iraqi allies. A year ago, sectarian violence was spiraling out of control in Iraq, fanned by al Qaeda. Today civilian murders in Baghdad are down over 50%.

As facts on the ground in Iraq have improved, some critics of the war have changed their stance. As Democratic Congress man Brian Baird, who voted against the invasion of Iraq, recently wrote after returning from Baghdad: "[T]he people, strategies, and facts on the ground have changed for the better, and those changes justify changing our position on what should be done."

McCain and Leiberman make the case for support of the surge and it's success by quoting boots on the ground. The commanders on the ground are the voices that I trust as well. Obviously the American people do too.

McCain and Leiberman see the choice this way:

We must also recognize that the choice we face in Iraq is not between the current Iraqi government and a perfect Iraqi government. Rather, it is a choice between a young, imperfect, struggling democracy that we have helped midwife into existence, and the fanatical, al Qaeda suicide bombers and Iranian-sponsored terrorists who are trying to destroy it. If Washington politicians succeed in forcing a premature troop withdrawal in Iraq, the result will be a more dangerous world with our enemies emboldened. As Iran's president recently crowed, "soon we will see a huge power vacuum in the region . . . [and] we are prepared to fill the gap."

They end with no kind words for Bush:

The Bush administration clung for too long to a flawed strategy in this war, despite growing evidence of its failure. Now advocates of withdrawal risk making the exact same mistake, by refusing to re-examine their own conviction that Gen. Petraeus's strategy cannot succeed and that the war is "lost," despite rising evidence to the contrary.
The Bush administration finally had the courage to change course in Iraq earlier this year. After hearing from Gen. Petraeus today, we hope congressional opponents of the war will do the same.

More on the Petraeus Report here.

Update: is running a full-page advertisement in the New York Times under the headline: "General Petraeus or General Betray us? Cooking the books for the White House."

via Gateway Pundit

Quick Note.

My daughter, who is in college now, has expressed an interest in guest blogging here. (She is a broadcast journalism major) So don't be surprised if you see a post by "RightWingDaughter" in the coming days and weeks!

What if we all stayed home?

When I talk to normal people who are not political junkies like myself, I am not surprised when they show no passion or even desire to vote in the Presidential election. Both sides feel terribly let down by their party.

Given the scandals in the Republican party of late, the evangelicals are feeling like they do more good at church than at the voting booth.

Anti-war Democrats are fed up with the leadership in failing to not even stop the surge, much less the war. Add to that, Bush wins over and over from the Patriot Act to the surge, despite Democratic control of the House and the Senate.

I have a feeling that this Presidential election will be the lowest voter turnout to date.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

The Comeback Kid.

That's the buzz. McCain is riding high and even took away some of Thompson's announcement thunder.

Read McCain's remarks at The California Republican Party Convention Saturday and tell me that you don't agree with everything he said, and admit that you loved the way he said it.

It's Presidential. It's perfect.

Are we Safer today? The right and the wrong of it.

The WashingtonPost has a piece today by Thomas H. Kean and Lee H. Hamilton who are the former chairman and vice chairman of the 9/11 commission. The title is "Are we safer today?" To them, the answer is no. I think we are, but I am certainly willing to listen to other voices, but it's hard to have respect for them when they say something like this:

We face a rising tide of radicalization and rage in the Muslim world -- a trend to which our own actions have contributed. The enduring threat is not Osama bin Laden but young Muslims with no jobs and no hope, who are angry with their own governments and increasingly see the United States as an enemy of Islam.

So...the answer is giving young Muslims jobs? So they think that the young terrorists turn to radical Islam because they have no hope for the future? May I remind these gentleman of the background of the 19 hijackers from 9-11?? Almost all were well educated and middle class or even wealthy, among them an architect, teacher, and a law student. So please spare me the notion that it is poverty that drives some to fanatical Islam.

Then there is this:

Four years ago, then-Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld famously asked his advisers: "Are we capturing, killing or deterring and dissuading more terrorists every day than the madrassas and the radical clerics are recruiting, training and deploying against us?"
The answer is no.

Really? And what proof have you of this? Have you polled the radical mosques in the Middle East? Have you sent someone out to count terrorists like the census bureau does when counting Americans? I really want to know how you know this. It would have been nice to give that information in the article.

From everything that I have read about radical Muslims, they saw the United States as a paper tiger. They hit us over and over in the 90's and we basically did nothing. So they kept hitting us. Then, when we showed military might by going into Iraq, they have, by some wild coincidence, stopped hitting us.

Also, by some wild coincidence, we keep thwarting terror attacks. Yet, according to these gentlemen, we are not safer.

Then there is this:

Moreover, no question inflames public opinion in the Muslim world more than the Arab-Israeli dispute. To empower Muslim moderates, we must take away the extremists' most potent grievance: the charge that the United States does not care about the Palestinians. A vigorous diplomatic effort, with the visible, active support of the president, would bolster America's prestige and influence -- and offer the best prospect for Israel's long-term security.

Visible active support of the President? You mean like this?: ( From Pres. Bush, 2002)

My vision is two states, living side by side in peace and security. There is simply no way to achieve that peace until all parties fight terror. Yet, at this critical moment, if all parties will break with the past and set out on a new path, we can overcome the darkness with the light of hope. Peace requires a new and different Palestinian leadership, so that a Palestinian state can be born.

I call on the Palestinian people to elect new leaders, leaders not compromised by terror. I call upon them to build a practicing democracy, based on tolerance and liberty. If the Palestinian people actively pursue these goals, America and the world will actively support their efforts. If the Palestinian people meet these goals, they will be able to reach agreement with Israel and Egypt and Jordan on security and other arrangements for independence.

And when the Palestinian people have new leaders, new institutions and new security arrangements with their neighbors, the United States of America will support the creation of a Palestinian state whose borders and certain aspects of its sovereignty will be provisional until resolved as part of a final settlement in the Middle East.


I can understand the deep anger and despair of the Palestinian people. For decades you've been treated as pawns in the Middle East conflict. Your interests have been held hostage to a comprehensive peace agreement that never seems to come, as your lives get worse year by year. You deserve democracy and the rule of law. You deserve an open society and a thriving economy. You deserve a life of hope for your children. An end to occupation and a peaceful democratic Palestinian state may seem distant, but America and our partners throughout the world stand ready to help, help you make them possible as soon as possible.

Not only does this show a fundamental understanding and sympathy for Palestinians, but a vision of hope for the future to live in peace with the Israeli's. But why stick with facts when propaganda will do? It is not the fault of Pres. Bush or our govt. if Palestinians cannot strive for the vision Bush stated above. But none of this seems to "count" in their eyes.

More from the WaPo article:

Military power is essential to our security, but if the only tool is a hammer, pretty soon every problem looks like a nail. We must use all the tools of U.S. power -- including foreign aid, educational assistance and vigorous public diplomacy that emphasizes scholarship, libraries and exchange programs -- to shape a Middle East and a Muslim world that are less hostile to our interests and values. America's long-term security relies on being viewed not as a threat but as a source of opportunity and hope.

I agree with this one part, But it seems to be making an assumption that isn't true, that the U.S. is doing none of those things. On the contrary we have begun to "use all of the tools of U.S. power." An e-mail I recieved a while back stated the following:

3,100 schools have been renovated, 364 schools are under rehabilitation, 263 new schools are now under construction and 38 new schools have been completed in Iraq.

Teachers now earn 12 to 25 times their former salaries.

25 Iraq students departed for the United States in January 2005 for the re-established Fulbright program.

There are more than 1100 building projects going on in Iraq They include 364 schools, 67 public clinics, 15 hospitals, 83 railroad stations, 22 oil facilities, 93 water facilities and 69 electrical facilities.

There 96% of Iraqi children under the age of 5 have received the first 2 series of polio vaccinations.

sources: Coalition provisional authority briefing and Forbes magazine.

I'm sure that many reading the article in WaPo will assume that none of this is going on. It's like a parent lecturing a kid to do his homework while the kid is busy doing it.

I am just sick and tired of the United States and Pres. Bush getting no credit for all the things we have done right. And they are not small things.

The Petraeus report comes out tomorrow. I am sure there will be mixed reactions and mixed reviews on whether the surge is working. But I can guarentee you that none of the postive will be emphasised. None of the progress touted in the MSM.

Because the United States is like the underappreciated wife. No one notices all the things that get done, only those things that do not.

Does it get any better than reading Mark Steyn?

"Where's the war?"

He reminds us of terrorism in other places in the world where it became routine to wake up to news of some horror. But not here. Not here.

" the six years since President Bush declared that America was in a “war on terror,” there has been in America no terrorism. In theory, the administration ought to derive a political benefit from this: The president has “kept America safe.” But, in practice, the placidity of the domestic front diminishes the chosen rationale of the conflict: If a “war on terror” has no terror, who says there’s a war at all? That’s the argument of the Left — that it’s all a racket cooked up by the Bushitlerburton fascists to impose on America a permanent national-security state in which, for dark sinister reasons of his own, Dick Cheney is free to monitor your out-of-state phone calls all day long.

Then Steyn shows the absurdity of the conspiracy theory nuts:

Have you seen that bumper sticker “9/11 WAS AN INSIDE JOB”? If you haven’t, go to a college town and cruise Main Street for a couple of minutes. It seems odd that a fascist regime which thinks nothing of killing thousands of people in a big landmark building in the center of the city hasn’t quietly offed some of these dissident professor.

He ends with this excellent line:

"On this sixth anniversary, as 9/11 retreats into history, many Americans see no war at all."

Go read the whole thing.